Why PlayStation VR Won't Come With The Camera

This morning Sony Australia announced that PlayStation VR will be coming to Australia in October for the altogether reasonable price of AU$549.

The only catch? The PlayStation Camera, which is necessary for PlayStation VR, will have to be bought separately.

According to Sony, there's a good reason for that.

Simply put: Sony believes that many people buying PlayStation VR at launch are the type of early adopters who already own a PlayStation Camera.

"We're just trying to speak to that audience and keep the price down for that audience," explained Patrick Lagana, Head of Product Marketing at PlayStation Australia.

"We looked at our audience who we create products for — especially new propositions like PlayStation VR — these people are going to be our initial consumers when it comes to PlayStation VR."

Shuhei Yoshida, in an interview with Tech Insider, said the exact same thing: "We didn't put it in because many people already own it."

Patrick mentioned that Sony would absolutely work with retailers to help create bundles for people who do require a PlayStation Camera, but that would be on a case-by-case basis.

"We'll work collaboratively with retailers to create any specific packages," he told us. "Retailers will use their own research to get an idea of what they need and create the packages they need to sell to their customers."

According to Sony, it's all about making the price accessible the largest possible audience. By keeping the cost low, Sony believe it stands the best chance of reaching that initial core group of PlayStation 4 owners.

"The way we look at it, we have 35m consoles out there," said Patrick "They are all VR ready — that's the way we look at it. We want everyone with a PlayStation 4 to get into PlayStation VR."

The price is a large part of that equation. There's been a massive backlash, particularly in Australia, to both the Oculus Rift and Vive. Both will most likely cost Australians well over $1000. In that context, PlayStation VR's pricing seems extremely cheap.

"We understand our market and our audience at a price that is accessible to them," said Patrick. "That's our heritage. We're a tech company and we have that experience. It's a combination of working with the best components and the best know-how in the company. We have that vision but that accesible price point is really important.

"For us it's about harnessing the best of Sony, making sure we deliver experiences our consumers expect but also make it accessible to a broad audience."

As you might expect Sony is extremely excited about the launch of PlayStation VR. The next step: get the device in the hands of as many people as possible. That's one of the sticking points of VR, and a major obstacle for its chance of mainstream success: you really need to experience it to understand what a major leap forward it really is.

"We are looking different partners across the board, from retailers... well, we cant say too much right now," said Patrick. "There'll be some partners you'll expect others you won't expect. We just want to get PlayStation VR out to as many people as possible."


Comments

    cool - it does mean i can buy the camera now and its one less of a spend when it comes to buying the VR unit.

      Grab it while it is $50 at DSE, Move controllers can be had for under $35, so I'd get them now too.

      Or you can buy the camera in a retail bundle, which will be cheaper than buying it RRP now. I'd guess they'll sell the camera for $60, if you buy a PSVR.

      Both the camera and move controllers still have the pricing they fixed before the AUD crisis. If they made the decision to include everything, everything would have gone through the new rates which would be worse for us.

    Buy the camera now because prices will go up soon.

    “The way we look at it, we have 35m consoles out there,” said Patrick “They are all VR ready — that’s the way we look at it. We want everyone with a PlayStation 4 to get into PlayStation VR.”

    I can't help but wonder whether including the (necessary) camera in the box would go a long way towards achieving that goal...

      Not necessary if, like me, you already have the camera, or opt to pick one up second hand etc.
      I'd be pissed if the only bundle included the camera, as I would end up with two.

      I think they probably should have a bundle price for those who don't, it sounds like it will happen that way in practice anyway.
      I guess Sony would know how many cameras they have already sold, so they probably have a good insight into whether a bundle is a good idea or not.

        True, although I found it a bit odd that he cited the number of PS4's they've sold (35m), but not the number of cameras, which you'd think would be a relevant figure to this discussion.

        I think they did sell a fair number around the PS4 launch, though - there were bundles at the time which included it. I imagine sales have dropped off a fair bit since then due to the lack of games that actually support it, though.

          Apparently it's about 15% or so. So maybe about 5M with cameras.

          They are only betting on early adopters aka 'hardcore' fans to dish out the money for the headset.
          I wish it were lower, I may get into the hype or have enough money saved up for it by release.
          But it certainly isnt high on my priority list.

          Besides, my couch is too far away from the TV to use the headset, I have kids and wouldnt want to give them the opportunity to trip over something potentially destroying my whole entertainment setup.

            Yeah, it's not really something I'm rushing out to buy. I worry it would give me motion sickness (something I get occasionally just in regular first person games), or that the headset, cables etc would be too unwieldy, or just that I'd feel like a tool wearing it :P

            But these are issues with ALL the VR headsets, so if I could see my way past those problems, I'd probably find the PSVR solution the most appealing just because it's so much cheaper.

              I have the same issue with motion sickness. I lasted about 1 minute with the original Oculus. I have mentioned that on here before, and a couple of people have jumped in and mentioned the massive improvement in refresh rates which go along way to helping motion sickness issues.

              I'd love to grab the PSVR, but until I can have a go for myself, it's an expensive investment especially when I can't see the bucket I may need to vomit into haha

                Maybe someone will do a bundle with a bucket :P

      Nope - I already have the camera if i were forced to buy another one id be pretty pissed off

        So they provide one option that includes the camera and one that doesn't. I'd say most PS4 owners probably don't have a camera already so it would make sense.

          Good chance (as others have suggested) that there will be bundles which include the camera - from the retailers if not Sony itself.

          I have the camera; so far about the only thing it's useful for is messing with voice and face recognition. I'm waiting until I see what's available in terms of games & apps before I pick up a VR system, however.

          I can see this happening - For Christmas or something but maybe not for release

          They would do that later on. Right now I'd be surprised if they have enough RGB displays to cover the initial demand.

    I'm glad they did this because I have a camera already. I picked up a second hand one a couple of months back for $50 because I thought I might use it for something one day. Mainly because I had some left over credit at the CEX store where I traded some old games. I'd like to say it was because I knew it would be needed for VR but really I just got lucky.

    @serrels- a little bit off topic but is theirn any word at all on pc compatibility?

      Haven't seen any mention of it at all, that's purely the realm of Rift and Vive. You'd probably have to wait til release to see if anyone hacks something together.

      @markserrels
      I doubt it straight off but shouldn't be too long before people work it out. Will be interested if Sony offer support ot not

    Why not sell 3 skus...
    1. Just PSVR
    2. PSVR + Camera
    3. PSVR + Camera + 2x Move controllers.

    My only hesitation in regards to buying one now is what if they release an updated camera for it?

    Honestly this is a rip off just like the PS4 itself. The Rift is $600 but doesn't need a camera, plus it will work with more games and will be more realistic cuz PC has better graphics and 60 fps.. Sorry guys you got scammed. PC Master Race for LIFE.

      The rift needs a motion sensor (same functionality as a camera) but includes it with the kit..

      Appriciate the master race pride but isn't the rift more like $1,200 for us.

        Not to mention the rig required to run it would be in the thousands (assuming).

          Apparently around 900 for min specs according to random reddit posters
          But somebody saying MASTER RACE FOR LIFE likely already has one so even an upgrade would be less than buying a PS4

            I guess if you're already invested in a high end PC you could justify it. As an entry level setup for someone to dip their foot into VR PS VR seems to be the best option.

      Really? PC Master Race is bullshit, cant you just like games?
      The PS4 is a great system, has great games and is getting a VR addon that you can buy with a console that is less than the Rift or the Vive.

      I have a gaming PC that exceeds the Rift and Vive system specs, but I wont be getting either for a long time until their prices is more realistic. The PS VR is the most likely to be a commercial success at this point.

    GTX970 by itself is about the same price as a PS4, I'll spend the ~$1000 or so I save all up on more games.

    Under $50 at Dick Smith -
    http://www.dicksmith.com.au/playstation-4/sony-ps4-playstation-eye-dsau-yg10251

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